Re: guaranteed minimum income

Michael Lorrey (
Sat, 21 Mar 1998 11:19:43 -0500

Sunah Caroline Cherwin wrote:

> >He said (and I am sure I have got this right) that a fact about the US
> >situation that we never hear about from the proponents of such wage
> >flexibility in Australia is that the USA has a GMI policy given effect by a
> >system of negative taxation which bites in at a certain income levels each
> >year. Do you know anything about that? >
> >
> >Can US pipple on the list kindly fill in some background for an ignorant
> >Australian gadfly?
> >
> >Damien Broderick
> nobody automatically gets money. we can apply for food stamps; this is a
> Federal program, though, since the other governmental programs are
> subsidized by the feds and meet federal guidelines it doesn't make much
> difference. we can only get food stamps if we have very little property, I
> think less than $2000 worth. We can apply for General Assistance from our
> communities. It varies by location and is about $350/month in San
> Francisco. We can apply for Aid To Families With Dependent Children. This
> is our major welfare program and has been severely restricted lately, so
> people are booted off it after a short while, which they weren't before. We
> can apply for Social Securit Disability, which is the remaining boondoggle,
> as you can get the money, about $700 in San Francisco, for being crazy in
> an easily-demonstrable way, or addicted to a substance in a way that
> impairs your ability to work. So welfare money, like most money, goes to
> people who can figure out and employ systems in a consistent way. People
> who aren't so smart don't have it so soft.

Yes, however I think he was more interested in the Earned Income Tax Credit. If
you have one or more dependents and make less than I beleive $23,000 a year
(correct me if I'm wrong), then there is a sliding scale to figure out your tax
return, which in many cases gives you back more than you paid in over the year.
My little brother, for instance, a learning disabled individual (severe
dyslexia) who works as a chef, makes between $10,000-$15,000 a year, and got
$2650 back in his tax return (he has one son) which is at the very least several
hundred dollars more than the total amount withheld from his pay for the year.

So not only does this provide additional income redistribution, but it also
helps poor people save money which they may use to help them better their
situation. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. While my brother bought a
pickup truck (the return came in just as the chassis on his old one broke
turning his old pickup into a wallet), many people I have heard of getting this
return will typically spend it on durgs or booze, or vacations.

While I'm not one to advocate government dictating people's personal lives,
considering its my taxes that is being paid into these people's pockets, I think
that they should only be able to spend the money on either education or personal

   Michael Lorrey
------------------------------------------------------------ Inventor of the Lorrey Drive
MikeySoft: Graphic Design/Animation/Publishing/Engineering
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